Date: 27th July 2015 at 7:59am
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We go way back in this episode of the Where Are They Now series to take a look at the career of Harry Wilcox.

HARRY WILCOX – Born 17th January 1878 Dalston, London.

Harry, or to use his full name Harry Melbourne Wilcox, began his football career with Bromsgrove Schools before moving on to Bromsgrove Rovers, from there he joined Aston Villa reserves.
In October 1897 he signed for Small Heath, who would later become Birmingham City.
He made his debut in a 3-1 win at home to Barnsley but was never able to secure a regular first team place and at the end of the 1989-1900 season left after making seventeen appearances to join Watford who were then a Southern League team.

After one season with the Hornets he left to join Preston, at the end of his first season he had scored fourteen goals to finish 1901-02 as their leading goal scorer.
Two seasons later his goals helped Preston to finish as Division 2 champions after scoring 42 goals in only 99 games in 1905 Harry left Preston to join Argyle, it must have seen as a bit of a coup for manager Bob Jack as the Greens were playing in the Southern League. Bob had not long begun his first spell as Argyle manager and Harry was one of his first signings.

Harry, a forward, made his debut on 2nd September 1905 in a 2-0 win at home to Norwich with Bob Jack and Fred Buck scoring the goals. It didn’t take long for Harry to get on the scoresheet, in the next home game he got both goals in a 2-1 win over Reading. In the next game at Watford he scored the first goal with another from Fred Buck making sure of the points.
Harry scored in a third successive game when Argyle went to White Hart Lane and beat Spurs 2-0 with Jack Wright getting the first goal. Harry added to his already impressive goal tally at the end of October when he scored the Argyle goal in a 2-1 defeat at Millwall. His next goal also came away from Home Park, this time in a 1-1 draw at New Brompton, who would later become Gillingham.
The following Saturday he scored another two goals this time at home to Portsmouth in a 3-1 win with Fred Buck getting the third goal.

Ten days later Harry scored two more goals in a 3-2 win at home to West Ham after William Leech had opened the scoring. In the next game in a 2-2 draw with Portsmouth, Harry got the first goal with Tommy Briercliffe adding a second.
For a second time in his debut season Harry scored in a third successive game when he got the goal in a 2-1 defeat at Reading.
In January in the FA Cup Qualifying round Argyle played New Crusaders, an Isthmian League team, and beat them 6-3, mainly thanks to a hat trick from Harry with Johnny Banks, Tommy Briercliffe and Percy Saul also scoring.
In the next game Harry Scored twice in a 4-2 win over West Ham Fred Buck and Percy Saul also both scored. The following Saturday Harry scored once again, this time in a 3-1 loss at Fulham.
He also scored in the reverse fixture at Home Park in a 1-1 draw.

Harry’s next goals came in high scoring matches, on 10th March he scored twice in 5-1 hammering of Bristol Rovers at Eastville with Fred Buck, William Leech and Jacky Wright all scoring.
The following Saturday at Home Park Argyle again scored five goals, this time without reply, New Brompton were the victims, Harry scored his 23rd and 24th goals of the season with Percy Saul, Tommy Briercliffe and Fred Buck all also scoring.
Harry scored his last of the season in the final game, a 2-0 win at home to Brentford with Charlie Clark getting the other goal.

Harry’s goals brought him to the attention of Football League clubs and at the end of the season after playing in 52 games scoring 25 goals he left to join Leicester Fosse, who would become Leicester City in 1919, who were playing in the Division 2.

Leicester at the time were captained by ex-England international Billy Bannister.
In Harry’s first season at Filbert Street his sixteen goals helped them win promotion to Division 1 (Premiership).
Given his success at Leicester it must have come as a surprise to the fans when at the end of the season he moved back to Division 2 with West Brom, he only stayed with the Midland’s team until the end of the 1907-08 season where he scored five goals, when Harry returned to Argyle, who were now being run by a Commitee.

Harry made his second debut for the Greens on 7th September 1908 in a 2-1 win at Brentford with Jimmy Hindmarsh and Herbert Leavey scoring the goals.
It didn’t take him long to get on the scoresheet himself when he got the goal in a 1-0 win at home to Brentford the following week. He followed that one up two weeks later when he scored the Argyle goal in a 2-1 defeat at home to Bristol Rovers.
Four days later Harry got the first goal in a 2-0 win at Coventry with Harry Ingram scoring the second. His next goals came at the end of October when he scored both goals in a 2-1 win at home to West Ham. New Brompton came to Home Park on Christmas Day and were beaten 2-1 with Harry and Fred Warburton both scoring to give the Argyle fans an extra present.

Four weeks later in yet another 2-1 home win, this time to beat Southend with Harry and Jimmy Hindmarsh both scoring. Harry who seemed to make a habit of scoring the first goal did it again in a 2-1 win at home to Norwich with Fred Warburton getting the winner. Harry scored his 11th goal of the season in the final home game, a 3-0 win over Leyton, as usual he scored the first with Harry Ingram and Peter Evans also scoring.

1909-10 season saw Argyle without central defender Charlie Clark who had left the club to join Crystal Palace. As a stop gap Harry was asked to take his place, it was a position he would retain for the next ten years. As in his previous seasons Harry rarely missed a game, although his defensive duties meant he failed to add to his goal tally.

Harry returned to goal scoring form in 1910-11 when he scored twice in Argyle’s biggest win of the season, a 6-0 thrashing of Coventry at Home Park in early April, John Boden also scored twice with Will Dixon and Jimmy McCormick scoring one each. Harry’s performances over the season led him to be selected to play in a Southern League representative side against the Irish League.
1911-12 saw Harry named as captain, and although he didn’t score he did lead Argyle to their best ever season when they finished as runners-up to QPR by one point.

The following season Argyle went one better when they won the Southern League title beating Swindon and West Ham, who both finished on 48 points by two points. As well as courageously leading his team he also scored twice, his first came when he got the first goal in the second game of the season in a 3-1 win at Bristol Rovers with Will Dixon and John Boden also scoring.
Harry’s other goal came in mid-March when he scored the third goal in a comfortable 3-0 win at home to Brentford with the prolific Freddie Burch scoring the other two. Freddie ended the season as the Southern League’s top scorer with thirty goals.

With no promotion possible until the rules were changed in 1920, Argyle still played the 1913-14 season in the Southern League despite finishing the previous one as champions, although Harry did play in an International trial fixture against the Football League as a reward for his performances.
Argyle still did reasonably well, finishing fifth and beating champions Swindon 3-1 at Home Park.

Harry’s service for the club was rewarded on 18th March 1914 when he was awarded a benefit game.

Although Argyle had been one of the leading Southern League teams for several seasons 1914-15 saw them lose many of their players as they lost several players as they enlisted to fight in the First World War and as a result finished in the lower half of the table for the first time in several years.
At the end of the season football stopped for the remaining four years of the war. Harry spent his war service working in Devonport Dockyard and when football returned in 1919 rejoined Argyle.
Harry was 41 at the start of the 1919-20 season, in fact when he played his last game on 18th October 1919 he was only three months off his 42nd birthday, unfortunately his last game ended in a 1-0 defeat at Southend.

When the season was over Harry left the club and became player/coach with local side Green Waves.
In his two spells at Argyle Harry played in 325 games and scored 40 goals. It was the last season Argyle played in the Southern League as the were invited to join the Football League as part of the new Division 3.

Harry remained in Plymouth for the remainder of his life. He ran a pub after finally retiring from football until he passed away on 21st July 1937 aged 59.

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